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Tag Archives: taxpayer

Fun With Numbers And Why Welfare Should Only Go To The Deserving

“This year the Australian government will spend on average over $6,000 on welfare for every man, woman and child in the country. Given that only around 45 per cent of the population pays income tax, the average taxpayer must pay more than twice this amount in tax to fund welfare expenditure.

“In other words, the average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full-time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian. Is this fair?”

Joe Hockey

A few weeks ago, I struggled to work out what on earth Joe meant by this. There are so many strange calculations in this that I suspect he was hoping that we just didn’t think about it and got angry at those people who are getting welfare.

Except that, apparently, the Australian government is spending $6,000 on every man, woman and child. Of course, this is an average. So I – as a taxpayer – am very angry that I’m not getting my $6,000 and it’s going to some lucky bastard whose got no job and gets to watch daytime TV in between surfing at Bondi while playing video games on their iPod.

And, as Joe pointed out – I’m working a month a year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian. And yes, it’s not fair. So I decided not to think about it and get angry. Can this person come and do my job for that month? That would be fair.

When I suggested to an unemployed teacher that they could come and work instead of me, they were quite enthusiastic until I pointed out that they wouldn’t be paid – it was just to make it fairer because, after all, I’m working that month to pay for their welfare.

But even though I couldn’t convince somebody to work for nothing, I decided that Joe’s idea of telling us how long we’re working to pay for things was a good idea.

Taking average weekly earnings at approximately $1437 for a full time employer and multiplying this by 52, this means that the average taxpayer is paying approximately $12467 in tax each year.

So, the average taxpayer is working for 37 years to pay for the grant to build the Science Wing at the elite private school down the road.

The average taxpayer is working for 402 years to pay for the PM’s grant to Manly to build a new grandstand.

And finally, the average taxpayer is working for a million years in order to pay for the jets we intend to buy. Although this one makes me angry because if we have to work for this long the retirement age will have rise again, and, like the unemployed, these planes don’t work! Sorry, I forgot the money for this had been set aside, so it’s really no cost at all.

With commitments like these, I can see how I can’t possible spend a month working to support someone on welfare.


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